LSLA

London Solicitors Litigation Association

July 2010

London Solicitors Litigation Association

Welcome to the LSLA newsletter. We set out below details of some of our most recent activities and those we have planned for the future. We also refer to some legal issues which might affect you.

LSLA News

Spring Lecture Series

Our lecture series is now complete. However, you can find notes from some of those lectures on our website, including:
 
“Recent Developments in Judicial Review” by Khawar Qureshi QC - many of the latest developments in Judicial Review are considered and Khawar's notes can be seen by clicking here.
 
“The Illegality Defence: Use and Abuse” by Craig Orr QC
- Craig's talk on how expanding law and regulations has increased the use of defences based on the Claimant’s illegal conduct can be seen by clicking here.
 
“Forum Battles” by Stephen Phillips QC - recent developments in the law relating to the interpretation of jurisdiction clauses, challenges to forum and anti-suit injunctions can be seen by clicking here. (download the Forum Battles lecture notes in powerpoint format)
 

Second Visit to the Supreme Court - 6 October 2010

Last year members of the LSLA visited the Supreme Court for an informative talk by Louise Di Mambro (Registrar of the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and Acting Registrar of the Privy Council) about the role of The Supreme Court of the United Kingdom and the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council. This was followed by a short tour of the Court.

The event was so well received that we have decided to repeat it and shall take place on 6 October 2010. Numbers will be limited to 50 with a preference being given to those who did not attend last year’s visit. Full details shall be circulated in due course.

Committee Members - Vacancy

The Committee strives to reflect the broad practices of the LSLA’s membership.

There is currently a vacancy on the committee for another member and having considered the matter carefully, the Committee would welcome applications from practitioners specializing in the filed of personal injury, clinical negligence or defamation. If you are interested please send you CV to Gavin Foggo, our Hon. Secretary at gfoggo@foxwilliams.com.
 
Rolls Building - New Business Court

The LSLA has had the opportunity to inspect progress with the new building and the plans for fitting out of the Courtrooms. Although aspects of the work are behind schedule, the Court Service expects to save time going forward. The project therefore remains on schedule for the transfer of all the Commercial, Chancery and Technology and Construction Courts, along with the Chancery Masters, by October 2011.

Some matters still being worked on include ease of transfer of large documentation from car loading bays into public areas and Courts; the flexible arrangements for accommodating documentation in the Courtrooms; facilities at tables to house files; and the extent to which access will be permitted from an entrance in Bream's Buildings in addition to the main entrances off New Fetter Lane.

Court users have had some, albeit limited, opportunities to test soundproofing between conference rooms and Courts, but the Court Service has given strong assurances that these will all be fit for purpose.

Further visits will be carried out to the site in autumn 2010 and a report will be posted on the LSLA website. If in the meantime anyone has any queries or requests for further information
please email lucymckinley041@btinternet.com.

Solicitors Journal and New Law Journal - Discounted Offers

As reported in earlier editions, although the administrative details are still to be finalised, we are in the process of agreeing a discount of 20% to LSLA members for their subscriptions to the Solicitors Journal and New Law Journal. We shall let you know when this has been agreed so that you can take advantage of the discount.

Renewal of Membership

Renewal forms will be sent to you in July, so look out for these.
 
Note as to LSLA Accreditation
 
The LSLA is not an accrediting organization. Should you see any references to our having accredited any individual, company or scheme, please let us know.
 

Legal News

Consultation Papers
 
Proposed Court Closures
The Ministry of Justice has announced its proposals to modernise and improve the use of Courts. It has launched a consultation seeking views on its proposals to close 103 magistrates’ and 54 County Court, which it says are “underused and inadequate”. Included within the list of proposed Court closures are Mayor’s and City of London Court and Ilford County Court, which many of you might use.
 
A copy of the consultation paper can be found at http://www.justice.gov.uk/consultations/docs/proposal-on-the-provision-of-magistrates-and-county-court-services-london-fiinal.pdf

The closing date for responses is 15 September 2010. The LSLA shall be considering the proposals carefully and we shall report in our next news letter upon developments.
 
The Bar Council - Contractual Terms Consultation
The Bar Council has released a Consultation Paper in which it sets out its proposed changes to introduce a new basic form of contract to be recommended by barrister and solicitors and
to replace the existing Terms of Work and the 2001 Terms. The New Contractual Terms set out the respective responsibilities of solicitor and barrister and create a legal/contractual liability for the payment of fees and a clear means of enforcement.

A copy of the Consultations papers can be seen at http://www.barcouncil.org.uk/consultations/ContractualTermsConsultation

The deadline for responses is 31 July 2010.
The LSLA shall be preparing a response. If you would like your view to be included please email Lucy McKinley at lucymckinley041@btinternet.com.

Survey on Improving the Enforcement of Judgments and Facilitating Cross-border Debt Recovery

The European Commission has asked the Centre for Strategy & Evaluation Services to conduct an online survey into improving the enforcement of judgments and facilitating cross-border debt recovery, including the possibility of introducing a European bank attachment order. Responses were sought by 28 June 2010, so we await the outcome in due course.
For details of the survey see http://www.cses.co.uk/survey/BankAttMain/intro.htm.

Recent Press

The LSLA has attracted some press over the past month including:

  • 7 June 2010, Times On-Line “An Open Letter to Ken Clarke, the Lord Chancellor”, from Seamus Smyth (see http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/
    article7145788.ece
    )
  • 8 June 2010, “Referral Fee Reports Call for Greater Transparency”, Butterworths LawLeader, quoted Seamus Smyth on the Legal Services Consumer Panel’s
    consultation on referral fees (click to view the pdf).
  • 15 June 2010, Solicitors Journal, “Right On” by Simon Davies, addressing the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union and its affect on practitioners (click to view the pdf).
  • 18 June 2010, New Law Journal, “Power to the Consumer” by John Bramhall and Karen Boto who predict future trends in litigation (click to view the pdf)